'Sugar Fever' Grips Soviets, Paper Says

Associated Press

Soviets are lining up at stores across the nation to buy sugar because of a shortage blamed on moonshiners and widespread fears of a pending price increase, a newspaper said Wednesday.

"It's as if a 'sugar fever' has gripped the country in recent months," the Komsomolskaya Pravda youth daily commented.

It blamed the sugar fever on people who make illegal liquor, people trying to accumulate stocks because of rumored price increases and black marketeers trading in the "white gold."

Since Soviet leader Mikhail S. Gorbachev decreed an anti-drinking campaign in May, 1985, moonshining has been on the rise to parry the lowered production of vodka and spirits and price increases for alcohol in state stores.

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